It’s the end of the world as we know it…



Usually over the summer break I avoid the news as I find it depressing and brings the “holiday mood” right down – but after the events of the last couple of days you find yourself reading up and tuning in more as the horrors unravel in front of us. From the horrific plane crash to the Israeli tanks rolling into Palestine, you do wonder if we are on the edge of a 24 script. Unfortunately Jack Bauer is fictional, the deaths and terrorism is fact.

The MH17 Malaysian Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpa appears to have been shot down by a ground to air missile by the “pro-Russian” separatists in Ukraine. While this is a best guess by most commentators it does mean that this is an international issue because we know that those so-called independent groups trying to bring the eastern part of Ukraine back into Mother Russia are in fact Russian soldiers. If you think that this is rumour or hyperbole then you just need to take a look at the badges, insignias and weapons they have used thus far in the Ukrainian uprising – they are Russian soldiers and therefore must have some kind of connection to the Kremlin. If it turns out that a missile did shoot it down it would be hard for Russia to have much support around the table of the UN – even from their usual comrades China.

This might seem a bit clinical and impassive way of looking at a huge human tragedy, but those 298 who perished on that flight may only be the starting point if proof were found of Russian involvement and while my heart goes out to the families of those who died – a large percentage of them children according to today’s news – we might be grieving for even more innocents in the coming weeks as revenge and retribution is taken.

Israel vs Palestine – round infinity. You almost lose the ability to understand what is happening there because it’s an ongoing roll of death on both sides with international voices for both sides being drowned out by missiles, bombs and tanks. The two state solution is everyone’s preferred option but neither of the two fighting sides appears willing to concede first or to start the negotiation over the holy capital they both lay claim to.

Looking at it from the outside it seems simple, but if it were we would not be seeing the death and destruction on our screens each night. The Palestinians putting their fate in Hamas’s hands and the Israeli leadership refusing to interact with them – Stalemate. And it always will be as long as America funds Israel and appears to e taking sides. I’d hoped Obama could have been the person to step in and get the ball rolling on meaningful discussions – I’m sure he hoped he would too – but it just won’t happen until both sides put their guns aside, vote for moderates on either side of the “wall” and sit down to sort it all out.

Then again when you have Tony Blair as your peace envoy you’d be as well having Barrymore as your swimming coach or Rolf as your baby sitter.

Flippant yes, but you fail to see where the end will come in either battle. The one thing we can guarantee is that more blood will be spilled – the majority of it from innocent civilians. When will humans learns from history? How can we still have such a thirst for power and destruction after both regions have a history of it? It will take very special and selfless people to bring either conflict to an end. I don’t see those people anywhere yet. That worries me.


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